Dr Juliet Usher-Smith will become University Lecturer in General Practice next year at the Primary Care Unit. She will establish and lead her own programme of research in primary care and collaborate with researchers across the Clinical School and the wider University.
Within the teaching part of the role, she will lead the MPhil in Primary Care Research and the training and development of the GP Academic Clinical Fellows within the Primary Care Unit. She will also work alongside the GP Education Group (GPEG). She will take on specific responsibility for the preclinical BBS Part II course in GP and Primary Care Research and the general practice Student Selected Components in years 4 and 5. Juliet will also continue to practice clinically as a GP at Queen Edith Medical Practice for two mornings a week.
Here Juliet describes how her research is developing the evidence-base for risk-stratified medicine and explains why the University Lecturer post is her ideal job.
“The overall aim of my research is to improve the health of the population through research to develop the evidence-base for risk-stratified medicine. This is important because most people do not benefit from most interventions across medicine, particularly in general practice.
So by being able to identify which people are more likely to benefit, we can then target interventions at those individuals while at the same time reducing the burden of investigation and treatment in those less likely to benefit. Lots of teams of researchers here in Cambridge and elsewhere are developing risk models that could potentially be used for risk-stratification.
As a GP, my focus is on the use and implementation of these risk models at an individual level. This includes addressing questions like: How can we best communicate personalised risk and treatment choices to individuals? What effects does communicating risk have on patients, the public, and healthcare professionals? How should we decide on risk thresholds and who should make those decisions? How can we best incorporate risk-stratification into current practice? and What effects will introduction of risk-stratification have on the wider healthcare system?
At the moment I am focusing on these questions within cancer prevention in primary care; bowel cancer screening; and kidney cancer”.
The University Lecturer role is my ideal job as it gives me the opportunity to continue combining research, teaching and clinical practice as a GP and to stay within the Primary Care Unit”.
– Dr Juliet Usher-Smith
“From a research perspective, having a University post means that I can start planning larger projects. It opens up more funding opportunities and also gives me the security and time to think about longer term projects and collaborations that are not possible on short-term Fellowships.
Having a specific teaching role also means that I will have more time and opportunity to contribute to the design and delivery of teaching at undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate levels. I hope that through the role I will also be able to help raise the profile of general practice and academic general practice amongst medical students and across the University”.
Juliet takes up her new role in February 2020.
Queries: Lucy Lloyd